Doctor, pharmacist and police officer killed in shooting at hospital in Chicago before gunman dies

Doctor, pharmacist and police officer killed in shooting at hospital in Chicago before gunman dies

FOUR people including a police officer and the suspect have been killed in a mass shooting at a hospital in Chicago.

The horrifying incident occurred at Mercy Hospital on the US city's South Side at around 3pm local time (9pm GMT) on Monday.

The gunman opened fire on his ex-partner, 38-year-old Dr Tamara O'Neal, in the car park outside before entering the hospital and shooting dead a newly-graduated pharmacist, 25-year-old Dayna Less.

A police officer who responded to the incident, 28-year-old Samuel Jimenez, was also killed inside the building.

According to reports in the US, the shooter – 32-year-old Juan Lopez – also died at the scene, but it is unclear whether he was killed by police or turned his gun on himself.

Mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel said the attack "tears at the soul of our city".

He added: "The city of Chicago lost a doctor, pharmaceutical assistant and a police officer, all going about their day, all doing what they loved.

"It is the face and a consequence of evil."

Dr O'Neal was an emergency physician at the 292-bed hospital and was reportedly the gunman's former fiancée.

Police said the pair were arguing outside the hospital before Lopez "lifted up his shirt and displayed a handgun" when a friend tried to intervene.

Gunfire broke out as the friend ran for help, before Lopez "stood over" Dr O'Neal and "shot her three more times", Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said.

He then ran into the hospital shooting at random and killed Ms Less, who was getting off an escalator at the time.

Police Officer Jimenez was killed in an exchange of fire with Lopez inside the hospital.

A second policeman miraculously avoided injury after a bullet fired in his direction struck his firearm.

Lopez – who had been set to marry Dr O'Neal on October 27 before they split up – died in as yet unclear circumstances moments later.

Dr Patrick Connor, director of the Mercy Hospital's emergency department, said Dr O'Neal was "dedicated to caring for her community – a wonderful individual".

Officer Jimenez was a married father-of-three. "We cannot thank him enough for his courage and bravery today," Dr Connor said.

Nearby buildings, including the National Teachers Academy, were put on lock-down during the attack.

Mercy Hospital later tweeted that all of its patients were safe.